with the cutest two guys on the planet. The Husband just called and asked me and The Son if we would meet him for lunch. I can't pass that offer up since it will also involve a trip to the mall and Gymboree if I'm driving all the way to Delaware. Gotta love the tax-free shopping!
Can you believe tomorrow is October already? Christmas is just around the corner!
I finally got to see the movie "Sex and the City" last night and of course, I loved it. The Husband even watched it with me and seemed to enjoy it, at least on the level that a man can enjoy and understand it. He likes Chris Noth from "Law and Order" so at least it had an actor in it that he liked.
I stayed up WAY too late for a girl who has to get up at 5:45, but I guess it was worth it. I went through a lot of tissues, but I have been known to cry at "The Simpsons" so that should be no big surprise.
However, my blogging has suffered the consequences and I am not able to think or type coherently at the moment. (What's my excuse on the other days then you ask? Very funny.)
I have just about all of my Halloween decorations up and they look super cute. We had a little party on Saturday night for The Husband's 44th birthday and people seemed to like everything I did. I'm going to try to post them tomorrow or maybe I'll wait until Wednesday for the first day of October, either way, they'll be posted this week.
Yesterday was a big day in the CityFamily/CountryFamily household. The Son tested for his first karate belt! Now, let's be honest, at 4 and a half, the karate belt testing isn't all that involved but we were all still very proud. He did a good job in class. He has a tendency to talk. A lot. If you know The Son or are a regular reader of this blog, you're probably not surprised to hear that. All in all, he did a pretty good job of keeping his mouth shut at the appropriate times. His form is getting better and he was able to do his "Dragon Form 1" with no mistakes.
The excitement of the evening was when he got to break a board with is foot. I've seen other kids do it and even then it's kind of exciting but nothing compares to your own child doing it. It was cool and he did it on the first try! Of course, I have lots of pictures to show you.
Here's the class, you can't really see The Son in this picture, he's in the upper left hand corner of the room but I wanted you to see how many kids showed up for testing day. There were four kids testing for belts, but the others were getting stripes on their belt. It works out that a child tests for a new belt approximately every four months. We also have six different times during the week that your child can attend class (twice a week) so the classes are usually much less crowded, sometimes there's only two or three kids attending.
Stretching...The Son is not very flexible but surprisingly, none of the kids really are. I guess I thought kids were more naturally flexible but what do I know?
Waiting while some of the higher belts do their forms. You can see The Son waiting "patiently" in the corner.
Getting ready to break the board with Master Fisher's instructions.
Right before he did it! Of course, I didn't get a picture of the board breaking actually happening since I wanted to watch it and not take pictures of it. Give it four months, I'll take it next time. ;)
Here he is taking off the white belt and getting the orange one. I am so proud!
A couple shots of him after he got the belt and his certificate. You can also see him holding the board he broke. It's not exactly thick either, is it?
We had a great time and even got to go out to dinner afterward. The Son wanted to go to McDonald's of all places but we talked him into something a little more "upscale" and headed to a local pub/inn where we dined on yummy buffalo wings and sandwiches. It was a great night!
Mama Kat is hosting her Writer's Workshop today and gave a few prompts to get us all started. One of the prompts was to write a letter to someone you miss a lot and I almost wrote a letter to my mom but I decided that would be too easy, not to mention too sad so I chose to write:
10 things I believe...
10- I believe that Haagen Dazs Reserve "Toasted Coconut Sesame Brittle" is the best ice cream flavor ever invented.
9- I believe that scrapbooking is good for the soul.
8- I believe that there is no sound better than your child's laughter.
7- I believe that pets are a part of the family.
6- I believe that a mother's love endures forever.
5- I believe that sisters are "forever friends."
4- I believe that a Daddy is the most important man in a child's life.
3- I believe that everything happens for a reason, even if sometimes, we might never know that reason.
2- I believe that everyone is good at something.
1- I believe that nothing in life is ever as important as your family.
I'm still working on my Halloween stuff. I cleaned the downstairs yesterday...throughly, including the pantry and a couple cabinets. I didn't get a whole lot done with the Halloween stuff but what I did finish, is looking C-U-T-E cute if I do say so myself.
That is of course if you find ripped curtains, black crows and scraggly trees cute. Which of course I do. I won't be blogging much today because I have lots of little black bats to cut out and suspend from my dining room chandelier. See what I mean...doesn't it sound cute?
The Son has school today and I teach swimming this afternoon/evening. I'm hoping to finish up the decorating tomorrow and Friday then I'll post pictures. Lots of pictures.
We were just filling out an "All About Me" paper for his Pre-K class that was supposed to be filled out a while ago and I somehow missed. He's giving normal cute answers to all the questions until we get to the question about his favorite book. His answer?
Can you believe that child? The thing is, it's NOT his favorite book and we rarely ever read it. I think he just wanted to make me laugh and that he did my friends, that he did... he settled on "Stellaluna" because Momma would NOT write down "Everyone Poops!"
Ok, well she doesn't really suck but the vacuum she's giving away as a prize sure does. In the good way of course. The way that vacuums are supposed to suck in. Here's a link if you want to go check it out. There's a few ways to gain entries. Go check her out and good luck! (But not too much good luck because I really want that vacuum.)
Sorry! Not much to blog about today so I'll just tell you about my busy day and what's coming up for the week.
I already worked this morning and came home to do some computer/work stuff. I also threw in a load of laundry that needs to go in the dryer ASAP. The Son is making me crazy with his talk of all things Pokemon... He's never seen Pokemon on TV, how the hell does he even know what he knows about it? I really, really don't even get it.
Anyway, The Son has swimming at 12:30 today (before pre-school) which means that I have to stay at the Y until 1:00 to change him back into his clothes. I'll pop home quickly after that and take the Ziggy for a walk. I have to go back to pick up The Son at 3:30 and then I teach swimming from 4:00 to 5:30. I have a meeting at the Y from 6:30 to 8:00 and after that, I'll finally be able to come home.
The Husband is going to a Phillie's game tonight which obviously means that I'll be on my own for bedtime, dinner time, dog feeding time etc. etc. Not that that's any different from most other nights of course.
I've been getting Halloween things ready all last week and I think the decorating process will commence this weekend after a through cleaning of my house. I was supposed to attend a swim instructor training this weekend coming up but it was cancelled. It's The Husband's birthday on Saturday so I was pleased about the cancellation even though I really want to take the training and get it over with.
So, I know this was a mess of a post. I warned you that I didn't have much to blog about right now. I'll work on coming up with some good ideas soon. Have a great day everyone!
We're having a busy day today. Not much all that exciting to blog about but since I haven't been blogging since Thursday, I'll write a quick post and tell you what we're doing. I'm actually enjoying my coffee and oatmeal in peace right now, Ziggy has a pig's ear to chew on. (blech.) and The Son is still asleep. The Husband is teaching an ethics seminar at Villanova this morning so I'm kind of all alone for a few more minutes at least.
The Son starts soccer today. He was supposed to go last week but was sick. He was supposed to go the week before but we were having Hanna remnants. He will finally go today barring any weird unforeseen circumstances. He's due there in an hour...I'd better get moving!
We are all getting our hair done today, the guys have cuts scheduled and I have color and a trim. I can't wait, I usually put it off until the very last possible minute when my greys are really bad and my roots are worse! I'll be so happy to be "cute" again at least for a couple weeks.
I want to do a little shopping after the haircuts but we'll see what the budget allows for that.
Last, but certainly not least, we have Parent's Night Out at the Y tonight. The Son LOVES it. The kids just go swim and play for three hours and parents get to go out on a date. We're actually coming back to our neighborhood for a party but that's even better, we get to go out and have fun and not spend any money! Should be a good time. The Husband will go pick The Son up at 9 since CityMomma/CountryMomma will have had a glass of wine or two at that point (sorry Honey, you know you're always the DDD...Designated Driver Daddy!)
So, that's our busy, busy day! Enjoy your Saturday everyone!
The Son and I are spending a quiet day at home today working on crafts. It will start out as fun but will probably end with my being frustrated and him being covered in paint. I'll let you know how it goes.
I love Thursdays. It's the day before the weekend, The Son doesn't have anything that he has to go to (except next Thursday when he will test for his first karate belt) and I don't have any swim lessons to teach. The Husband gets out of work at a somewhat normal hour too so that's always a bonus.
It's a beautiful day today so we'll probably also spend some time outside taking our puppy for a walk. All in all, a nice relaxed Momma/Son day. I like those. If our projects are successful, I'll post some pictures later.
Halloween is one of my favorite holidays as I think I've mentioned before. I've been diligently collecting and creating decorations over the past few weeks that I will soon be able to start displaying. Yesterday I was out front spray painting thrift store candle holders and branches I found on a walk in a neighboring neighborhood. The kids in THIS neighborhood seemed to think that was strange for some reason. What? Your mom doesn't take sticks from the woods and spray paint them for use as a decoration? Well, perhaps she just needs to get a bit more creative! ha ha!
So I took a picture of all my stuff that I've accumulated so far, most from thrift stores and dollar stores and I thought I'd post a sneak peek for you. Are you getting as excited as I am for Halloween? Here it all is in my decorating cabinet. I put things I'm going to use for my next season in here as I buy them and then they're all ready to go when it's time. This of course won't work at Christmas since I could probably fill 1,047 of these cabinets with all the decorations I have but it works just fine for all the other holidays and seasons.
See those candlesticks below? They're black now and looking oh so much cuter. They were $2. The pumpkin, ghost, black cat (that you can't see in this shot) decoration was $.50. It's a little more "country" than I'd usually do but for $.50, I couldn't pass it up. I'll just change those little ribbons up and it will nestle in somewhere just perfectly! The little glass jars were $2. I know! I thought that was a lot too but I've been searching for those everywhere so that I can make some scary potions to display. I had to get them. The yarn that I also got in LOTS of other colors because I love me some hand knit wash cloths was $.40! (I taught myself to knit cables making wash cloths.) It's normally in the $2 range at the craft stores. I had to get lots of them. The Husband didn't necessarily agree with me on that one but he got over it. (I know that's not Halloween but since it's orange, it might get used somewhere)
The leaf-shaped glass dish was only $.75, I might try to spray paint it a color because they tell me that can be done on glass but I haven't decided yet. The pumpkin and the little picture of a pumpkin were found at an "antique"/craft market. They're new but still didn't cost too much and can also be used for Thanksgiving.
These babies were $2 too, they're also black now and will have white candles dripping with "blood" in them for the holiday.
And I think my best find, my little cutie apothecary jar that was $1! You know that's a good deal, right?
Lastly, I found this giant platter for $5, it won't be used for Halloween but I had to show you since I got it at the Goodwill. I knew I'd never stop thinking about it if I didn't buy it. I have no idea what it's going to be for but it's BIG and would make a nice platter for a veggie tray for our next party so I bought it. Cute, don't you think? So ultimately, my goal is to have everything completed (I have more crafty projects and stuff to paint) and displayed by the beginning of October. That will give me 31 days of haunted holiday bliss until I switch it all up and get ready to give thanks for my many blessings! Happy Fall everyone! Happy Fall!
I'm finally getting around to posting some pictures of The Mushroom Festival! I know I've mentioned before that we live near the town in Pennsylvania that is considered "The Mushroom Capital of the World." In fact, mushrooms are surprisingly Pennsylvania's biggest agricultural crop. Interesting huh? Even though we don't live in the town that's considered the Mushroom Capital, you can't drive very far without seeing many, many mushroom farms in most of the towns around here.
So evidently every year, this town has it's famous Mushroom Festival. It's a huge event with many, many thousands of people attending. We started out our day by going to the parade.
The Son and The Niece thought it was great fun. The adults were a but disappointed because there was not even one marching band, pretty much the parade consisted of classic cars ("Cool Babies" as The Son calls them), local politicians, some dude who was called "Mr. Delaware" as in a Mr. Delaware kind of guy that won a pageant. I still have yet to google him. Nonetheless, the kids had fun.
Oh yeah, the parade also had this... a person dressed up in a mushroom costume. That's not something you see every day now, is it?
After the parade we headed by the Kids' Entertainment Tent. The Son and The Niece had a fantastic time doing the twist and marching in a parade while singing "You're a Grand Old Flag". I do love me some George M. Cohan! Look at these two, twisting away like they did last summer!
This woman got in on the twisting action with The Kids. How funny!
After the entertainment, The Husbands carried The Kids up to the main street where there were lots of vendors to enjoy. Our husbands...always a couple of fun guys. (ha ha, you know I had to say that at least once in this post, right?)
We saw this thing called The MushRoom. It was weird because there was nothing really inside it except for a couple folding chairs. I didn't get it. It did serve as a great meeting place for us all later though.
We visited the tent where they show how they grow the mushrooms, it was quite interesting. Next year, I hope to go on one of the actual mushroom farm tours. Here's the son, posing with lots of different varieties of 'shrooms.
This is my favorite picture from the day, all those mushrooms in the back look so pretty (and yummy) to me and although The Son would never eat an actual mushroom, he was more than happy to pick one up and pose with it.
Lastly, I got this shot of some button mushrooms and how they look when they're growing. Neat huh? We were allowed to touch them and they felt really cool. The Son got to pluck one off and look at it under a microscope, that was big fun to him and I must admit, it was pretty interesting to me as well.
So next time you buy mushroom at the grocery store, think of my little area of PA and take a look at the label and see if they were in fact grown around here... chances are, they will be!
And I don't like it. I am sneezing, have a sore throat and just feel "yucky". It's not fair, I just started a new "job" at an elementary school and already I caught something? Grrrrr. I'll have to take some more "Airborne" I swear that stuff works for me!
I have lots of things that I want to post this week, The Mushroom Festival being #1. I also have a few shots from the Delaware Museum of Natural History and a BUNCH of thrift store/dollar store/craft store items that will soon be used for Halloween decorating. I love me some Halloween. It's my favorite holiday, well at least it ranks up there with Christmas. It is also my Mom's birthday so it's a special day in that regard as well.
I have work to do on lesson plans for my Eels and Rays for tomorrow and for my Pikes and Pike Plusses for Wednesday. I have a sub working for me on Wednesday so I really have to make sure my plans are in order. This is the first time I've ever had to have a sub so I want to make a good impression. Why is CityMomma/CountryMomma requiring a sub this week you ask? Well, that's a secret I might choose to tell you all about someday. ;)
Enjoy your Sunday people in Blogland! I'll try to be a better blogger next week!
So where were you on THE September 11th that made the date "September 11th" so infamous? I remember very clearly where I was. Like probably just about everyone else in the country, the day started out as completely normal. I remember getting ready for work sitting at my dresser doing my hair and listening to local news radio while The Husband was getting ready in the bathroom. I heard a report that an airplane had hit The World Trade Center and thought what a terrible mistake that must have been. I went and told The Husband and he too thought it odd but that was pretty much all the thought we gave it at that point.
The Husband drove me to work that morning, I was probably running late as usual and on the very short ride there, we heard that a second plane had hit the WTC. I was working at the Atwater Kent Museum of Philadelphia History at the time and when I got into work. I told the security guard about the second plane. He had heard about the first one but I don't think he even really believed me about the second.
At that point, I guess I went about my business and prepared for my day, our Museum was closed for the day (we were always closed on Tuesdays) so I had no groups scheduled to teach. Later that morning, our executive director set up a TV in the conference room and we all convened to watch what was happening. As soon as the first tower fell our director decided we should all go home. It was so scary. I know I can't even begin to imagine how horrible it was for the poor people and the families who were directly involved but it was very scary not knowing what was going on in our country and living right in the midst of one of our country's most historic areas, not to mention actually living on "the oldest residential street." We had a scheduled board meeting for that night so we were all asked to break up the board members names and give them calls telling them the meeting would be cancelled. As soon as that was complete, we were allowed to leave.
I walked home feeling kind of numb and honestly still kind of scared. On my way home I passed a local news channel who had a live feed of the events on monitors outside the TV studio. Hundreds of people were gathered around watching it, everyone in shock. I know that at some point on my walk home I talked to my Mom, sister and The Husband and of course, everyone was fine. The Husband came home early that day too and we just kind of hung out watching the news coverage as things got worse and worse and worse.
I still think of all those poor people and their families often and wonder how and why these things happen. I know we'll probably never really understand that.
Also, today is one year exactly since my Mom had her biopsy and she was never really OK again. It's not a good day to say the least.
I'm feeling down about 9-11, my Mom and Iago and I know I still have Mushroom Festival pictures to post and I plan on doing that some day, really I do. Today however, The Son and I have decided to check out The Delaware Museum of Natural History. He's having withdraw symptoms now that he's moved to the country and doesn't get to visit museums and zoos as regularly as he used to. Poor kid.
I hope you all have a good day today, I'm sure everyone out there will be remembering where you were when "9-11 happened." Keep all those families in your thoughts and prayers, I know I will.
Iago Veritas beloved Miniature Pinscher of the CityFamily/ CountryFamily died today of complications related to lung cancer. He was 13 years old.
Iago grew up in the City of Philadelphia where as a puppy, he attended "Puppy Kindergarten" in Head House Square. He chose not to continue his studies but rather to concentrate on being a loyal and loving household pet. The CityFamily/CountryFamily was blessed to be on the receiving end of that love and loyalty. Iago was well-loved by all he met. He was said to be the kind of dog who "never met a lap he didn't like." He was a big dog in a small dog's body and in his time, was known to charm even "small dog haters" into fans of his. He was well-behaved, friendly and kind to both children and adults.
He got his name when he was adopted by his Mommy and Daddy as a small pup of only 2.2 pounds. His Daddy felt that it would be amusing to name such a sweet and lovable dog with an "evil name" and being an English major in college, instantly thought of the character of Iago from Shakespeare's "Othello". Veritas, meaning honest was his middle name since Iago is often called "Honest Iago" in the play of "Othello". Iago in the play was anything but honest but Iago the Min Pin was honest and true to the end.
In his free time, Iago enjoyed playing with his nubby ball, attacking the mail as it came through the mail slot of his City House, eating dehydrated liver treats, barking at strangers on the street and snuggling up with his family and friends. His favorite place was on his Mommy's lap under a blanket. He was especially adept at finding any small patch of sunlight on the floor and laying right in it. His canine siblings might say that he wasn't always willing to share his patches of sunlight but they loved him in spite of this minor flaw. He was always proud of his bright eyes, shiny coat and wagging stump of a tail and was happy to wag that thing for anyone who could even remotely appreciate it.
His adopted sister Desdemona (also a Miniature Pinscher) died in 2006 but he is survived by his human Mommy, Daddy and brother as well as his adopted canine brothers DaVinci and Zigfried.
The family will be mourning Iago's loss for quite some time and asks that you remember how important your pets are and to treat them extra special in Iago's memory.
In a little over an hour, we're taking Iago, our 13 year old Miniature Pinscher to the vet to have him put to sleep. Iago was diagnosed with lung cancer in March and there was really nothing they could do to help him. He's done really great until just about last week when he rapidly declined. I feel grateful that we had a few more good months with him and that he's a relatively older dog anyway. It's just so hard and I know how much I'll miss my sweet boy.
MIL is visiting so she can stay with The Son while The Husband and I take Iago so today is really the best day to do it I think. We're having a miserable cloudy thunderstormy day too so it all kind of just fits.
I'll post some pictures of him and a little obituary later. You're going to have to wait another day for those mushrooms.
I know I mentioned Mushroom Festival pictures BUT...I am very busy today. I have two new levels of swimmers to instruct this evening and I need to work on those lesson plans...yes, I'm still working on lesson plans. Honestly, I just want to get all 8 weeks planned so that it's done and over with until the next session starts. I think it's pretty responsible of me, don't you?
So, I decided to move the mushrooms to tomorrow and post a few pictures of my new mantel decoration for today. I know most people are happily pulling out Halloween/Fall decorations at this time of year but I'm sorry, in my opinion, if it's still in the mid to high 80s, it's too hot for that yet. I like to do an interim "back to school" display and then move into Halloween for October and switch it to all Fall/Thanksgiving for November. The problem with that is, what to put up for "back to school?"
Originally I wanted some apple-y decorations but, I couldn't find any I liked at reasonable (cheap) prices. Then, I had a brainstorm in the grocery store the other day and I must say I'm really happy with the results. Like many of you out there in blogland, I have the beloved apothecary jars on my mantel. I swear you could put dog crap in those (and I'd have plenty to choose from) and somehow the dog crap would look good. Don't worry...I didn't do that. I decided to go with some basic back to school items. Crayons, pencils, books and an apple or two. I did use a few fall items just to start the transition from summer to autumn. Here's how it turned out:
The gumballs were just because I liked the bright colors and thought they were cute to tie in the colors of the crayons on the other side.
I put some more real apples around the house as decorations and I'm really pleased with the way it all turned out. I didn't have to buy much, just the crayons and pencils which The Son will happily use when we're finished and of course the apples. I think they'll stay fresh looking for a week or two more and then it will be time for Halloween. Halloween is my favorite holiday so I'm getting REALLY excited for that. Incidentally, I'll be making The Son's costume again this year and it's going to be a good one, I can just feel it. Just how exactly I'll put together a "Waste Allocation Load Lifter Earth-Class" has yet to be determined. (Do you know what that is? I bet most of you Mommies do...)
I start my "new" job today. I'll be doing the "School Age Child Care" for our local Y from 7:00 - 8:30. Shouldn't be too bad. Thank Goodness I have a uniform though...it's hard to get up when it's still dark out! I'll be back later to post pictures of the Mushroom Festival this weekend. I know you can hardly wait.
The Son had his first day of Pre-K on Wednesday. He's been to pre-school before, for the past two years in fact. He loves pre-school and it's been very good for him. He needs that socialization especially considering that he's an only child. (Who knows if he'll always be? ;) ) Pennsylvania does not have a state Pre-K so he attends three half days at...where else...our local Y. If you read this blog regularly, you know, we do just about everything at the Y. We heart the Y!
Here's the obligatory first day of school pose on the front step. I just noticed that if you look closely at the second photo, you can see my reflection in the side windows.
Driving to school, the "thumbs-up" was to signify that he would in fact be a good boy at school today...we can only hope.
Walking up and going in. It's funny how we do this numerous times a week but on this day, even The Son felt like it was special. He's growing up so fast, it's hard to believe. I know all you parents out there can relate.
He found his name and placed it on the attendance poster.
Got the nametag on!
He ended up having a great day and is excited to go back today. When I picked him up, he was so proud to show me what he did...this is a picture of a Giganotasaurus. NOT a T-Rex as I was so quickly chastised for assuming.
A few things I really like about this drawing are that:
#1 - it is probably the second drawing he's ever done that actually kind of looks like what he says it is and isn't a bunch of scribbles. The first drawing is here and yes, for the one person who guessed, it is Wall-E, his third favorite obsession just short of his shark obsession and dinosaur obsession.
#2 - the drawing has a story to go with it. Evidently, the Giganotasaurus, is standing on stilts to avoid the lava that's coming to get him. The reddish color on the side is the lava and the reddish color near his mouth is blood because he's a carnivore you know.
#3- Last, but by no means least. Miss Sue, The Son's teacher told me that he did this during a "coloring center" they were supposed to color a picture but MY son decided to turn the picture over and make his own picture instead. That's my free-thinking, mismatched shoe wearing guy for ya! Thankfully, Miss Sue wasn't upset that he did that, I would have been really angry if she had since the coloring wasn't for a specific project or anything.
So all in all, it was a great day for him, he had fun, he was well-behaved (although I'm sure sooner or later we'll have a day or two when he isn't) and he was happy to see me when I picked him up. Let's hope today goes as well. The Husband is picking him up and I "get" to spend my alone time cleaning the house in joyful anticipation of a visit from The MIL! Lucky me.
(Just to be clear, the visit from the MIL IS actually joyfully anticipated...the cleaning...not so much and I'm not just saying that because she reads this blog on occasion...really, I'm not.)
I'm a 41-year-old mom who teaches swim lessons at our local YMCA and who works as a nutritionist, helping others to lose weight. I recently lost 90 pounds myself and I've maintained it for a year. But I consider my most important job that of taking care of my sweet, 6-year-old boy, two furry canine sons and one fantastic husband to whom I've been married for sixteen years. We were "city people" for many years but we're now "country people" since we've moved from a small row home in a hip, urban neighborhood to a much smaller country town an hour outside of "our" city. Join me to read about our family's adventures, my love of fitness/running, crafts, decorating and healthy living and any other random nonsense I may decide to blog about...let the adventures begin...